By Steve Powell
MARYSVILLE – People were partying in the street, cars parked all around the neighborhood.
Suddenly, some police cars pulled up.
“Just like it used to be at 2 in the morning,” Ed Bagley joked.
He referred to an alleged drug house that had been a burden on the Shoultes-area neighborhood for at least a decade. On this occasion, it was the neighbors doing the partying, and police were invited to celebrate with them.
“The police officers here showed up a lot,” Bobbe Bonner said.
Officer Belinda Paxton said she had responded to calls there for years.
“This is what Marysville’s supposed to be like,” she said of neighbors being able to gather together. “They’re happy with our police work.”
The group enjoyed hot dogs, barbecued pork, all kinds of salads, desserts and beer.
The highlight of the evening was when Gary Buchanan placed a tiara on the head of Jessica Rohr, whose intense work with various agencies led to the house being evacuated. “They’re going to board it up” soon, Rohr said.
Buchanan called Rohr the “queen of the neighborhood. She had her neighbors’ backs,” he said.
She responded, “I put in fifteen years to get that title.”
When the residents left, Rohr said she noticed a change overnight. “The lack of noise,” she said.
Buchanan, who lives right next door, said there always were cars lying around their yard. They made noise and music all hours of the night and not just on weekends. He said he saw one of them dealing drugs at Marysville Middle School. He’d see six to 10 drug deals a day there. He’d known some of the kids since they were little. He took photographs of the license plates that came to the house. “They’d flip me off,” he said.
Bagley credited Rohr with having a mighty roar when it came to applying consistent pressure on police.